The days of strategically choosing people to cling onto in high school are gone. Your best mate got married and the others are following suit at a fast pace. The tribe you had been so closely tied to is now dissolving as adulthood kicks in and all of a sudden you’re finding yourself feeling a little friendless.
You need to start the process again but because you’ve grown into a cynical adult you’ve probably become much less tolerant and realise that you hate most people. Even so, it’s time you got back in the game and here are a few tips to help you get your friendship game on.
Part of being an adult is turning up somewhere for a disturbingly large chunk of your week during which you will meet new people who may either assist you to keep your job or actively try to kick you off the ladder one passive aggressive e-mail at a time.
Work related friends are one of two types: those who want to stamp all over you and watch you bleed, just for a small amount of praise from their superior and those who will support you on a Friday morning when you’re nursing a pretty hefty hangover. The workplace is one of the easier places to make friends but you also have to be careful. Don’t get ‘too’ cosy with your co-workers, that’s a disaster waiting to happen and beware of after work drinks. You might be feeling confident with that liquid courage but after one too many gin and tonics you might fund yourself telling the boss that you could do their job with your eyes close. Not good.
2. Break out the active wear
During the school era you were probably involved in some sports team or drama club. Now you’re more likely to be trying bikram yoga, fat burning pilates or something else that leaves you feeling sore and inflexible. So while the idea of getting sweaty and bendy might not be appealing, these places are always a bevvy of potential pals if you’re willing to share sweat towel (that was a joke, don’t do that).
You could also try a new hobby, find an interest, explore what you like and force yourself to attend a group even with a stage 9 hangover. Truth be told each person in that group has the same fear as you “what if they don’t like me,” “what if I make a total dick of myself.” STOP with the ‘what ifs’, what ifs don’t make friends. Those people also hate the thought of being dropped into a ball pit and made to play with others. Find some common ground in the awkwardness.
3. Say YES
Ok so Dave from I.T wants you to play Pokemon Go with his other mates on a Friday night, this is not really your jam and you think Dave is kind of dorky but you never know, maybe you’ll end up catching some real friends (instead of invisible, make believe Pokemon).
If people ask you to attend a party or a day out this is a great way to get in the mix even if it involves some sort of physical injury. Take a chance, say yes!
4. If you don’t ask you don’t get
The same concept applies to arranging activities. You may feel like a bit of a twat asking somebody from work to go for a coffee on the weekend, I mean Lucy must have a family and husband and maybe two dogs so why would she want to spend a bit of the weekend with you? Truth is Lucy is fed up being stuck in the house and her regular friends spend too much time talking shit about contouring their faces –you are a welcomed ray of sunshine! Learn how to ask peole out on a friendship date.
5. Give a little time
Volunteering has came a long way over the years, the opportunities are endless and could provide you with the chance to meet those with a common interest and the moral value of giving back to society with no financial gain is a big bonus. If you are studying or want to gain experience in another field or simply want to fill up your week this could be an excellent way to do it.